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Hockey Tanzania – Project realized in collaboration between COPE NGO and Tanzania Hockey Association

Sport as a tool for socio-economic development for young Tanzanians

“Sports has the power to change the world.” It has the power to unite people in away that little things else. despair. ” (Nelson Mandela)

The activity of the Hockey project was born on the personal initiative of the volunteer Valenina Quaranta [1], currently the Country Manager of Co.P.E. in Dar es Salaam (Tanzania), starting at first training activities with a group of guys in the neighborhood near the office. Subsequently, in June 2013, at the request of the Tanzanian Hockey Federation, Valentina, supported immediately by Co.P.E. has restored the Tanzanian women’s team inactive for almost a decade. Valentina started to train the players, many of whom became mothers in the meantime, with many problems due to lack of material, lack of adequate infrastructure, opposition from families, a condition of poverty that even pay the transport to go to the field represented an unattainable cost. In the space of three months a fundraising campaign was carried out which allowed us to collect the equipment and the money necessary to face the expenses of training and trips to Kenya during the Africa Cup in September 2013. To the Tanzanian women’s team was the first ever attendance at an official international competition of this kind.

Subsequently, the project has expanded through the birth of other women’s and men’s teams, the training of young coaches and coaches who currently teach primary and secondary schools in Dar es Salaam and in some regions of Tanzania.

Activities carried out and results achieved

1. Participation in international competitions:from 2013 until today the Tanzanian women’s and men’s national teams have participated for the first time in a series of international competitions of the highest level, including:

Africa Cup 2013 (Nairobi, Kenya): 4th place (female)
Africa Cup for Club 2013 (Kampala, Uganda): 5th place (female)
2014 World Cup qualifiers (Nairobi, Kenya): 3rd place (female) 4th place (male)
Africa Cup for Club 2014 (Bulawayo, Zimbabwe): 6th place (female)
Olympic Games Qualification (Johannesburg, South Africa): 8th place (female), 8th place (Male)
Africa Cup U21: 4th place (female) and 5th place (male)
2. Training program:

Starting in 2014, a continuous technical training program was started with the aim of educating young players, players and teachers of physical education to become coaches. Up to now, 80 coaches have been trained, of which 60 on the “basic” level and 20 on the “intermediate” level. The training program includes not only basic hockey techniques but also basic notions of child psychology and team management. The goal is to increase the number of local trainers who can teach the practice of field hockey and spread it among young Tanzanians in the outlying areas of Dar es Salaam, contributing to the reduction of the rate of young people involved in activities at risk. The training courses are organized periodically twice a year, thanks to the involvement of experienced coaches coming from Europe through the Twende Hockey Foundation, a Dutch organization founded with the aim of supporting the development of hockey in Tanzania. Currently 4 of the trainers trained to date are paid by the Twende foundation and train in four different areas of Dar es Salaam.

3.Hockey in schools and local communities:

Since 2014, in parallel with the training of local coaches, a program has been started to teach this sport to young people from schools in Dar es Salaam and some regions of Tanzania. The players themselves, once they receive the training course, teach Hockey to children, teenagers and adults. Currently it is taught in:

13 primary schools and 9 secondary schools: Dar es Salaam, Bagamoyo, Lindi, Tanga, Arusha
4 teams of the district of Dar es Salaam
University of Dar es Salaam
The beneficiaries are: 400 children aged 8 to 12, 250 children aged 12 to 18, and 300 young people under 30.

4.Entrepreneurship program and access to micro-credit

The program started in 2015 with an experimental phase to support the economic development of female players between the ages of 18 and 30 of the Dar es Salaam Twende women’s team, all coming from a poor socio-economic condition. With the aim of giving them the opportunity to undertake a small business, a program for accessing micro-credit was started, with an initial fund made available to girls to start up their businesses. Every two months the girls help to increase the fund to manage the expenses of the team, in exchange for funding for their start-ups.

[1] Former player of competitive field hockey with presence in the Serie A Women’s Championship from 1998 to 2010 and in the Italian National Youth Youth and Senior Championships from 2000 to 2010.

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